IT solutions now drive global business, and companies have come to rely on data for an array of purposes. That's why protecting important data is such a crucial undertaking for your company. After all, your organization could experience a disaster, such as a fire or flooding, which could damage your IT infrastructure and threaten your data. Or your organization could become a victim of a cyberattack, with vital information about your company and employees being stolen, destroyed or held at ransom. Indeed, cybercrime remains a growing threat, with a survey from Microsoft reporting that up to 31 percent of all small businesses nationwide have been victimized by cyber criminals. 

If you're unsure of some of the best ways to protect your company's data, look no further. Here are eight effective tips to keep your vital information safe:

1. Encrypt data
Encryption is a great strategy for protecting your data from cyber criminals, the IT security company Symantec explained. Encryption works by blocking access to data for anyone who isn't you, so be sure to take steps to encrypt important sources of data, such as files and so on. There are an range of encryption programs available, so conduct some research into the best option for your company. 

2. Secure mobile devices
As pointed out by Small Business Computing, data that is sent via mobile devices, such as smartphones, is typically more vulnerable to theft or hacking than data that is sent in other ways. Indeed Tech Republic noted that any data that is sent via a wireless network is at risk of interception. That's why it is important for your company to invest in tools that can help protect company owned mobile devices, such as iPads, from interception. The source suggested that this could involve the implementation of  mobile device management software.

3. Back up all data
This goes without saying, but it bears repeating: As stressed by Symantec, the best first step your company can take is to back up all of its most valuable data, in case of theft or a system wide IT disaster. This strategy also necessitates running tests to ensure that the back ups have worked. After all, there is 

4. Look to the cloud
Storing important data on the cloud is an effective strategy to safeguard against data loss via a network break down or an irreparable computer break and so on. With the cloud, you'll have access to your necessary information via any device. CIO explained that there are number of services available for those looking to store data in the cloud, including those that cater exclusively to businesses.

5. Offline backup
One surefire way to protect your company's most valuable data is to find ways to store it offline. According to CIO, strategies that might not immediately spring to mind in 2017, such as using DVD discs, can actually be effective. Indeed, the source noted that social media giant Facebook has used Blu-Ray for important data storage and tape drives have even been utilized by global search engine Google. 

6. Disaster proof storage
According to CIO, there are storage options available on the market that are specifically designed to withstand certain forms of disaster, such as fire or flooding. This could be a wise investment for your company if you are situated in areas prone to natural disasters.

7. Company-wide security policies
Within any organization, large or small, there is the risk of miscommunication in terms of company policies and expectation. Consequently, as advised by Symantec, when it comes to the protection of data within your company, ensure that your organization has clear cybersecurity policies in place, and that all staff are aware of these mandates. Examples of company-wide cyber security policies include ensuring that staff don't leave passwords lying around, or computers unattended, implementing mandates that all staff laptops and computers have protective software and so on. 

8. Offsite backups
According to TechRepublic, one of the safest ways to protect your critical data from risks such as fire, or natural disasters like flooding or earthquakes, is to store it in an entirely different physical location. Known as backing up offsite, this process involves hiring a company to take care of copies of your most important data, storing it at special facilities. The data is then made readily available should you need it after an emergency or disaster.

Consider MC Services
At MC Services, we can offer your company offsite backup services that ensure your most important information will remain protected. We keep the vital data in two places, at our backup location and our own facility, giving you the piece of mind that you'll always have access to the data your organization needs. For more guidance about offsite backup and the array of other services offered by our company, click here